Insect ID

gjcoreMay 3, 2014

Does anyone know what this bug is? Never noticed them before until this spring and there seems to be a good number of them. About 1/2" wide by 3/4" long.

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bugdoctor(5 CO)

This is a Flower Scarab in the beetle family Scarabaeidae. I think it is in the common genus Euphoria and the one you have is commonly called the Bumble Flower Beetle. Scarabs are mostly decomposers and are not predominately considered pests, so nothing to worry about with their presence. They get their name from the way they fly about like a bumble bee. The adults usually overwinter and then re-emerge when the temps pick up like we are seeing.

Nice find.

Some of the first documentation of Scarabs goes all the way back to the Egyptians where they were worshiped. Scarabs these days are more noted for the C-shaped grubs in lawns, though the ones in lawns are typically a different genus than you have in the pics and are considered a nuisance/pests.

Hope this helps. Happy gardening!

Here is a link that might be useful: IPM images

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 12:30AM
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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

It's so nice to have a bug Guru around here!

:-)
Skybird

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 1:44AM
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gjcore

Thanks bugdoctor for the info.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 11:30AM
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milehighgirl(CO USDA 5B/Sunset 2B)

bugdoctor,

I looked at the link you posted and it seems to me I had uncovered some larvae that look like scarabs. I posted in the Fruit & Orchard forum and was told it was a june bug larvae. Will you please look at my photo and see what you think. I've felt guilty for harboring June bugs in my compost ever since.

Here is a link that might be useful: Grub ID please

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 2:46PM
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bugdoctor(5 CO)

Skybird: It's nice to have gardening folks around here to help us entomologists!

Milehighgirl: the larvae that you have pictured do look like scarabs for sure. With the size of them being just smaller than an inch, they are likely some kind of June beetle (Phyllophaga) but could also be the ten-lined June beetle, a masked chafer or other chafer like the European chafer, or even the Japanese beetle. The only way to ID these larvae is through the hair pattern on their butt/last abdominal segment.

The common June beetle takes three years to mature to adult. The first year you don't really see anything while they develop in the soil. the second year the larvae are eating machines, munching on roots of grasses, perennials, and shrubs. The third year they may eat some, but not enough to matter, the damage is already done from the previous year. They likely were/are living beneath your compost pile too far to attempt some treatment. The few that developed around your compost pile/under the pile are unlikely to cause any real problems. Most likely one female laid eggs at the margin of the pile and the larvae developed near or under the pile. They are likely long gone by now.

The way you know you have them is usually in the evening or late evening when the porch lights are on and you are sitting outside. The adults are attracted to the porch lights in the late evening and are really poor fliers. They clunk off the glass door or siding while flying to the lights. Us weirdos then collect them if they are the ten lined variety or other colorful chafers.

In my opinion, without seeing whether your lawn is being eaten-which I assume has no visible damage, you need not worry about providing habitat for them. They will find plenty of places to lay eggs if your compost pile wasn't there. If your pile is active, meaning you turn it and heat it up occasionally during May and June when adults are active, you got nothing to worry about.

Hope this helps.

Here is a link that might be useful: Billbugs and White Grubs

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 3:27PM
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milehighgirl(CO USDA 5B/Sunset 2B)

bugdoctor,

Thanks for your lightning-fast response. Since my original posting I have found that two of my neighbors' lawns have been damaged or decimated by grubs. One of my neighbors used to vacuum his lawn. Now it's just dirt. Personally I have taken to tilling my yard every year and planting either annual grass or green manure. Believe it or not, but I only have to water a few times a summer as compared to my neighbors who water every night.

I haven't seen night-flyers but I haven't been looking for them. I will keep an eye out now.

Thank you again!!!

This post was edited by milehighgirl on Sun, May 4, 14 at 16:04

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 3:48PM
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bugdoctor(5 CO)

If the populations are so great that your neighbors lost a lawn from their feeding, I suspect you have overlapping generations and continuous adults/larvae in all life stages all around you. I'm sorry to hear that. The options to treat them are not great unless you don't mind dumping quite a bit of inscticides around the lawn and beds and hopefully no kids or pets in the area. We have them in our lawn from time to time and I choose to let them be, as we have pets and neighbor kids. Though we have neighbors that choose to neglect their lawns and property, so I figure it would be a fruitless battle to treat them in our yard. Sounds like you are in the same boat and have come up with a solution that works.
Happy gardening!

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 5:09PM
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ZachS. z5 Littleton, CO

Found one in a pot I have inside, I've never seen on either and almost posted another topic until I looked at this one again.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2014 at 1:04PM
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bugdoctor(5 CO)

I've never seen one inside the house, but if I were an insect and it turned to low twenties overnight, I'd be trying to get inside too.

Did you send it on its way back outside?

    Bookmark   May 13, 2014 at 6:52PM
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ZachS. z5 Littleton, CO

The pot was filled with dirt that had been in my shed for a couple weeks, so, I'm guessing he was just a stowaway lol.

I did, after my 3 year old was done ooing and ahhing over this cool new bug haha.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2014 at 10:33PM
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